Friday, December 02, 2005

Carnival alert

Live, from Catlett, Va., a suburb of beautiful downtown Warrenton, it's another Carnival of Comedy!

The incestuous tale of Canadian media

The Canadian media world just got a lot more incestuous...
In a Canadian media mega-deal, Torstar Corp. is buying a 20 per cent stake in Bell Globemedia, whose holdings include the CTV television network and the Globe and Mail.
The purchase is part of a four-party deal in which BCE Inc. is selling 48.5 per cent of Bell Globemedia for a gain of $1.3 billion in cash.
Torstar and the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan will each pay $283 million for a 20 per cent stake, while Woodbridge will pay $120 million to raise its Globemedia holding to 40 per cent from 31.5 per cent, after the deal, pending various approvals.
BCE, which also owns Bell Canada, the country’s biggest phone company, said Friday it will retain a 20 per cent stake in Bell Globemedia.

Let's see here.
One company holds:
(A) the largest telephone company in Canada;
(B) the largest commercial television network in Canada;
(C) the largest national newspaper in Canada.
Now, the largest metropolitan newspaper in Canada has a piece of that action.
Let's take this one step farther, shall we?
A vice-president of this company is running the Liberal Party's campaign in Ontario:
Meanwhile, a lobbyist for a communications company told Ontario Liberal MPs at their caucus meeting yesterday to expect a negative campaign both from the opposition and the news media.
Charles Bird is a lobbyist for Bell Globemedia (owner of The Globe and Mail and CTV) and is the Ontario campaign chairman for the federal Liberals. He told Ontario MPs the electorate is "very volatile" and warned that "it's going to be a very negative campaign.
"However, he vowed that Liberals will not be deterred.
"We will give as good as we get," he told MPs, according to an insider.
If that's not enough, it gets even better.
Charles Bird, as Vice-President, Government Affairs, is responsible for Bell Globemedia's government relations efforts relating to federal policy development.
Prior to joining Bell Globemedia in February 2004, Bird was Senior Consultant at Earnscliffe Strategy Group, an Ottawa-based government relations and communications firm, where he served a range of private-sector clients.
Prior to joining Earnscliffe in February of 2000, Bird was Policy Advisor to the Hon. Ralph Goodale in his previous capacities as Minister of Natural Resources (1997-2000) and Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (1993-1997).
Earnscliffe. Isn't that Paul Martin Jr.'s pet outfit, the one that somehow was magically excluded from any investigation in the Gomery Commission?
Are the crooks running the media in Canada?
The question is begged.

Hat tip to the Cyber Menace.

Christmas list, part 1

This will be a recurring series over the next month as the cracked research staff at either orr tries to solve that vexing problem: What to get someone for Christmas.
We start the programme with E.M., the Conservative Princess. She's in the midst of tackling a major project with the unlikely title "A Comparative Analysis of The United States and the Holy See: Philosophical Approaches to Addressing Widespread Global Conflict, and the Present Disparity of Attitudes in Pursuing 'World Peace.'"
Let's give her an A for this epic. Anyone who would tackle such a project merits an A just for having the guts to do that.
Speaking of guts, JimmyB, the Conservative UAW Guy, is next. He seems to want a rather unusual gift. So the team has come up with a Handy-Dandy Professional Impaling Kit, complete with a year's supply of dirty hippies and an equally large supply of cleaning materials, which he will need while dealing with all of those dirty hippies.
Suggestions are always welcomed. More to come.

New alternative fuel programme announced

By Ima Liarr
OTTAWA -- Prime Minister Paul Martin Jr. today announced a new plan to develop an alternative source of fuel for Canada's vehicles.
Martin Jr. said that he would authorize the expenditure of $3 trillion (Cdn) on a plan to convert sewage into automobile fuel, should his party be returned to power in the Jan. 23 election.
"We never run out of sh**," Martin Jr. said on the campaign trail in Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Moose Jaw and Medicine Hat. "There's always a fresh supply, especially when we in the Liberal Party of Canada speak.
"Besides, it would give us a chance to employ all the scientists who espouse global warming theories and give them some real work to do, instead of running around like the Chicken Littles that they really are. We believe productive Canadians are happy Canadians."
Martin Jr. also said that he would allocate part of that $3 trillion into research on converting bovine flatulence into usable fuel.
"That's a proven global warming source," he said. "A natural gas such as that has some potential and we intend to find it."
U.S. scientists were skeptical.
"I doubt they could get it done fast enough," said Dr. B. Reel, director of the Institute for Deep Thoughts and Discount Duodenum Surgery in Mocanaqua and Wapwallopen, Pa. "Canada will be drowning in sh** by the time Jan. 23 rolls around."

May I rant a minute?

Sometimes there ain't no justice.
Captain Ed, the spiritual father of a lot of blogs both north and south of the border, went on about the lack of coverage in the U.S. of A. about the downfall of the Paul Martin Jr. government. In his report, he observes that:
When the estimable blogger-journalist Austin Bay comments that Martin has become the “Nixon of the North”, American media consumers may realize that they have missed a major story thanks to the apathetic nature of the response from domestic news agencies to the scandal.
The date of Mr. Bay's parallel? 28 November 2005.
Let's go back to 3 June 2005, when some unknown blogger named either orr drew this parallel:
The Martin Jr. government is morally and ethically bankrupt.
It makes the Nixon administration of the 1970s look like a cadre of Mother Teresa clones.
Later, on 16 November 2005, this same unknown blogger cast these words into cyberspace:
Paul Martin Jr. reminds me a great deal of Richard M. Nixon, the discredited U.S. president -- and the only one to resign: Two insecure men, both with an almost pathological need to hold their nation's highest office, willing to do whatever it takes to maintain that office once achieved.
Both instances predate Mr. Bay's analysis.
Can I be hissed off?

/rant off

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Layton's golden opportunity

One thing strikes me about the upcoming Canadian parliamentary elections...
One man has a golden opportunity, if he has the brains and guts to seize it.
That man is Jack Layton, the foppish leader of Canada's national Socialist party, the NDP.
Brains? He may have 'em.
Guts? I tend to doubt it.
He has to see that a sizable chunk of Liberal voters are in play because of the disgust with the corruption Canada has had to face in the last 12 years. Many of those voters might turn to the NDP as an alternative.
But Layton can't just sit back and expect to get them.
And he may have to move toward the centre of the spectrum to get them -- perhaps not so far as to alienate his base, but far enough to convince the dubious that his party has a broader understanding than it presently displays of the nature of economic realities.
Does he have the guts to do that, to slide a bit rightward to give his party a chance to be more than just an adjunct to the corrupt Liberals? Does he have the guts to make the NDP a viable alternative, not just as a "protest" party, but a potential governing party?
From what I have seen, I don't think he does.
I don't even know if he would want to.
More's the pity, for debate's sake.
Not that I would want to see an NDP government, by any means.
But a vital NDP and and a vital Conservative Party coming out with real ideas, attacking the Libranos from both flanks, could consign the Liberals to the graveyard that any real philosophy that party had was buried years ago.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

English first: Isn't it about time?

I received this e-mail yesterday and figured I ought to share it with you:
Congressman Peter King (R-NY), now Chairman of the Homeland Security Committee, has reintroduced his National Language Act (H.R. 4408) in the 109th Congress.
Congressman King's bill is a strong, self-executing official English bill in its own right. Look at Section 163:
`Sec. 163. Preserving and enhancing the role of the official language`The Government of the United States shall preserve and enhance the role of English as the official language of the United States of America. Unless specifically stated in applicable law, no person has a right, entitlement, or claim to have the Government of the United States or any of its officials or representatives act, communicate, perform or provide services, or provide materials in any language other than English. If exceptions are made, that does not create a legal entitlement to additional services in that language or any language other than English. If any forms are issued by the Federal government in a language other than English (or such forms are completed in a language other than English), the English language version of the form is the sole authority for all legal purposes.
Congressman King's bill, if passed, would also eliminate the bilingual ballot mandates contained in the Voting Rights Act. Citizenship ceremonies will be conducted solely in English.
You can see why English First strongly endorses H.R. 4408.

English was good enough for our forefathers who came here from Italy, Germany, Poland, Cuba, the Czech Republic, Russia, Sweden, Belgium, Holland, etc., etc., etc.
It's still good enough now.

Joe Lieberman gets it

There aren't many contemporary folks who identify themselves as liberals that I respect.
Most of those folks are the Elitist Left, as illiberal a group as you can find.
Joe Lieberman, on the other hand, is a liberal. He understands, as few of his Democratic colleagues do, that the only option in Iraq is not cutting and running.
BAGHDAD, Iraq - U.S. Sen. Joseph Lieberman told Iraq's prime minister Wednesday that U.S. forces will remain in Iraq until their mission is complete, despite growing unease in Congress about the progress of the conflict here.
"We cannot let extremists and terrorists, a small number, here in Iraq deprive the 27 million Iraqis of what they want which is a better freer life, safer life for themselves and their children," Lieberman said after his meeting with Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari.
The Connecticut Democrat, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said the cost of success in Iraq would be high "but the cost for America of failure in Iraq would be catastrophic — for America, for the Iraqi people and I believe for the world."

Not many Democrats -- or Republicans, for that matter, including President Bush himself -- could make the case so eloquently.
"Terrorists can't defeat us on the ground," the Connecticut Democrat said [before the trip to Iraq]. "They can win by affecting public opinion here."
Lieberman's 1991 reasons for wanting forceful action in Iraq still echo through his speeches today."If we do not act," the senator said in April 1991, "if we neglect our duty to humanity, we would, as Dwight Eisenhower once said in speaking about a failure to confront evil in the world, `outrage our own conscience. In the eyes of those who suffer injustice, we would become partners with their oppressors.'"
Such consistency doesn't sit well with the Elitist Left.
Norman Solomon, executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy, called Lieberman "one of the worst Democrats in the Senate when it comes to foreign policy. He has an ideological view that prevents him from processing new information."
The Institute for Public Accuracy?
What is this?
The Institute for Public Accuracy was founded in mid-1997 by its current executive director, Norman Solomon, with the support of a two-year $100,000-per-year Public Interest Pioneer grant from the Stern Family Fund. IPA opened its national office in San Francisco in October 1997. Several months later, IPA established its media office in the National Press Building in Washington, D.C. It is a 501(c)(3) organization.
IPA increases the reach and capacity of progressive and grassroots organizations (at no cost to them) to affect public policy by getting them and their ideas into the mainstream media. IPA gains media access for those whose voices are commonly excluded or drowned out by government or corporate-backed institutions. As a national consortium of independent public-policy researchers, analysts and activists, IPA widens media exposure for progressive perspectives on many issues including the environment, human rights, foreign policy, and economic justice.

Progressive? I suppose condemning 27 million Iraqis to the terror of Saddam is progressive.
And a 501(c)(3)?
That's a tax-exempt non-profit. But I'm sure Mr Solomon is profiting mightily.
Whose word would you take -- the word of a man who has made four trips to Iraq to check out conditions himself, or the word of a self-appointed declarer of "accuracy"?
I'll take Joe Lieberman.
Joe, get out of the Democratic Party. There's no home for you there any more.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Peace Mom speaks

Cindy Sheehan, who inspired us all with her passionate defence of ending the war in Iraq, has carried her notoriety to a new arena.
"Not One More Mother's Child" is her latest contribution to the literature of the anti-war movement.
It is, in short, a masterpiece of incoherent inanities, pre-programmed robotic reflex reactions, neo-Marxist drivel, sure to be worshipped by your favorite members of the Left.
For others, it will be a bit hit in another way. Doctors are ordering this by the thousand as a sure-fire cure for insomnia.

Carnival update

This week's Carnival of Comedy comes to you from Northern Ireland. Yes, the Carnival is truly international. Check it out.

The seven stages of Christmas lights, round 1

It was time for Phase One of the decorating season: Christmas lights, outdoor phase. (Yes, we still call them Christmas lights here at the homestead. PC behaviours in this matter are verboten!)
There are seven stages of Christmas lights. Some of you may know them by heart; others may have experienced them, but not recognized them as such.
That is why the cracked research team here has presented the Seven Stages of Christmas Lights:
1. Testing the lights. Our lights are well-marked when stored for the season, so it becomes a matter of pulling them out of their containers and testing them. This is important because you need to know how many sets you have to run out to the hardware store to buy in order to replace the malfunctioning ones.
2. Untangling the lights. There is, I am convinced, a spirit that does its work, probably during the heat of summer. It takes perfectly wound strings of lights and tangles them to hell and back. During testing, if you have multiple sets entangled, the testing provides a way to track each string and untangle it.
3. Installing the lights. This is a relatively simple matter. Certain sets of lights are clipped onto the siding; others are wrapped around trees and bushes; others are wrapped around the railing of our deck. This year, we installed a storage shed in the back yard, which required installation of cup hooks on which to secure the lights there.
4. Cursing the lights. This always happens a few times during the course of the installation. Sets that had tested perfectly down in the basement decide they're not going to work, or only work partially, once they're in place. And, of course, it's never the end set of a group of strings. It's always one in the middle. As a result, I let out a string of words I don't use on this blog. This year, the volume was such that Candace could have heard me in Edmonton. Linda e-mailed me from P.E.I. wondering what was going on; E.M. in Ann Arbor did the same; Regular Ron from suburban D.C. said I shattered a window at his place. He thought the infidels had come to claim me. It was truly a moment that will land me in the confessional this weekend.
5. Reinstalling the lights. Once you've got the set fixed and running, you have to put things back where they belong. Duplicate work always ticks me off. So I am somewhat of an unhappy camper at this point.
6. Re-testing the lights. This calls for great concentrated prayer, that the fixed lights stay fixed and the other lights don't decide to go kerplooey on me.
7. Enjoying the lights. Since I work nights, the better half leaves them on until I get home (just so I can pull the plugs, ha-ha).
That was the outside. Phase Two -- lighting the Christmas trees (yes, trees) we have in our house -- is ahead.
I'll let you know when that's coming. You may want to block your ears.

Yeah, right

While a government was falling in Ottawa, not many kilometres away, the annual Cult of Kyoto Worship Revival began its 10-day carnival in Montreal.
The bias of the reporter isn't too obvious in this segment of the report:
Elizabeth May of the Sierra Club Canada, however, accused the world's biggest polluter of trying to derail the Kyoto accord, which has been ratified by 140 nations.
"We have a lot of positive, constructive American engagement here in Montreal - and none of it's from the Bush administration, which represents the single biggest threat to global progress," May said.

Yes, I'm proud to say that the Bush administration is the single biggest threat to global progress. It's the U.S. that has told the Maurice Strong-led Cult of Kyoto Worshippers to stuff it.

On the end of a government

It's ironic, isn't it?
All Paul Martin Jr. ever wanted to be was Prime Minister. He wheeled, dealt, cajoled, and a whole lot of other stuff to get there.
And he's going to go down in the history books... in a way he never would have imagined.
His government is the first in the history of Canada to go down on a straight no-confidence motion. No budget defeats, no other Parliamentary stuff -- just a straight vote of no confidence.
Bring on the election.
It's strange...
The Associated Press' story on the end of the line for PM's government included this reference, which struck me (and my man the Exile) as being somewhat odd...
The Conservative Party leader Stephen Harper joined with the New Democratic and Bloc Quebecois parties to bring down the government -- prompting the first Christmas and winter campaign in mostly Christian Canada in 26 years.
Does it have to be blatantly stated that Canada's population is at least nominally majority Christian?
Maybe it does.
And from Your Hit Parade, a little bit of Willie Nelson via Dandy Don Meredith for the Liberal Party:
Turn out the lights
The party's over
They say that
All good things must end
Call it tonight
The party's over
And tomorrow starts
The same old thing again

Let's lock the door and throw away the key...

... for this lowlife.
SAN DIEGO — A tearful, trembling Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham (R-Rancho Santa Fe) resigned Monday after pleading guilty to receiving $2.4 million in bribes from military contractors and evading more than $1 million in taxes.
A crook is a crook is a crook.
Unless, of course, he's a Liberal or a Democrat.
They get forgiven.

In the wrong place at the wrong time

They should have gone to Canada...
DUBAI — More than two dozen gay men — arrested at what police called a mass homosexual wedding — could face government-ordered hormone treatments, five years in jail and a lashing, authorities said yesterday.
The Interior Ministry said police raided a hotel chalet earlier this month and arrested 26 men as they celebrated the mass wedding ceremony — one of a string of recent group arrests of homosexuals in the emirates...

The arrested men have been questioned by police and were undergoing psychological evaluations yesterday. Azouri said the Interior Ministry’s department of social support would try to direct the men away from homosexual behaviour, including treatment with male hormones.
“Because they’ve put society at risk they will be given the necessary treatment, from male hormone injections to psychological therapies,” he said. “It wasn’t just a homosexual act. Now we’re dealing with a kind of marriage. There was a ritual involved.”

At least they weren't in Iran...
November 13, 2005: two young men were hanged in a public square in the northern city of Gorgan after being found guilty of lavat, or homosexual relationship, the daily Kayhan reported. The two men, identified as Mokhtar N. and Ali A., were aged 24 and 25 years old respectively. They were hanged in public in Shahid Bahonar Square in Gorgan.